Tuesday, December 8, 2009

UPDATED DEC. 9: Child abuse hotline pop quiz: Is this advice too dangerous to follow?

    The Florida child abuse hotline has a policy: Any time the hotline receives more than one a report alleging "unexplained" injuries to a child under five (presumably no matter how minor the "injuries") the report should be accepted for investigation. That got me to thinking about some advice I read more than 20 years ago. It goes like this:

"If a child is so carefully watched that she never has an accident, she is being fussed over too much. Bones may be saved, but her character will be ruined." [Emphasis in original.]

The problem is, taking that advice could set you up to be called in to your state's child abuse hotline. And, if it happens more than once, and you happen to live in Florida…

Of course some would wonder about the guy who gave that advice. Who would be so tolerant of what many might consider, at a minimum, neglect? Would you turn him in to the hotline?

Come back tomorrow, and I'll tell you who said it.

UPDATE, DECEMBER 9: The quote above is from Doctor Spock.  (Baby and Child Care (New York: Pocket Books, 1985) p.640.